Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Is God Really Sovereign?

I am so glad that, as a follower of Christ, I am called to think differently. Were it not for Christlike thinking, I'd find myself stuck in sorrow, fear, and dread far more often. I am human of course and do deal with these issues, but faith in Christ gives me a place to go with my fear and my dread and my sorrow.

In my life, this hasn't just been a theoretical idea either. Recently, two situations in my life tested how much I really believed what I wrote about thinking differently. To understand where I am coming from, you may recall a post I wrote last Spring called "Motherhood and God's Sovereignty."

About 2 weeks after I wrote that post, I had my 20-week ultrasound. In it, the ultrasound tech thought she noticed a club foot. Her findings were inconclusive, so we eventually had another ultrasound. As it turns out, our son does have a right club foot.

At the time of my post on God's sovereignty I wondered if my thoughts were the natural progression on my faith journey or if God had revealed that knowledge to me at that time for a specific reason. As it turns out, He was being intentional in my thought process about His sovereignty. Pretty cool if you ask me.

I do not fear dealing with a club foot. My research over the last couple of months tells me it will not be easy, particularly when we get into the bracing phase, but a club foot can be addressed.

The other situation that tested my belief in God's control was harder to deal with. It came on more suddenly and was more severe. Fortunately, I had a couple of people I could go to in that short time who pointed me back to the truths of scripture and reminded me that, for a Christian, there is no bad news from the doctor.

In late July we found a lump in Charlotte's groin. She has slipped in the pool earlier in the day so my first thought was that she had a hernia. A doctor's appointment led to an ultrasound which showed no hernia and suggested she had an enlarged lymph node. We were told that, if the lymph node didn't return to normal in a few weeks, she'd refer us for a biopsy. This also led to blood work which showed she was anemic.

Let me pause here to tell you that Dr. Google is not a mother's best friend! You'd think I would have learned that lesson when Mary was born, but I'm stubborn!

The results from her blood work came about 4:15 on a Friday afternoon. Great timing. Knowing we had a surgical consult just a few days later provided some relief, but let me tell you... I spent quite a bit of the weekend laying on Charlotte's bed praying for her, hoping that we would not be walking the path of a child with cancer (Google's logical conclusion of a swollen lymph node, anemia, and the absence of an infection). A friend who was aware of the situation emailed me to make sure I stopped Googling everything. Of course Bruce and I prayed together and read scripture together to be encouraged that God is in control of even our smallest details.

As it turns out, the surgeon thinks the initial ultrasound was wrong and that Charlotte really does have a hernia. It's not causing her any pain or discomfort, so we are just keeping an eye on it. And giving her a multivitamin with 100% of her RDA of iron for the anemia, which will be rechecked in a couple of months.

In the end... these circumstances are but a small test of my faith. I am no more at risk of losing a family member than I was before I knew about the medical issues we could be facing as a family. I am grateful that God spared me from watching Charlotte fight cancer, but I like to think that, had we been called to walk that road... I would have remained grateful to God for the opportunity to praise Him in that storm as well.

"Do not be anxious about anything,
but in everything, through praise and thanksgiving,
present your requests to God. And the peace of God,
which transcends all understanding,
will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
Phillippians 4:6-7

4 comments:

  1. Jennifer, Ron and I have been talking this week about trusting in God continuing from last week's Sunday School lesson. Even though we believe God can do all things, the unknown causes us to waiver. After He works we see His sovereignty, but during our journey we are like the father of the boy that Jesus healed from an evil spirit. Mark 9:24 "I do believe, help me overcome my unbelief." NIV I am so thankful God knows us and accepts us when we come to Him right where we are with our needs. Thank you for the update. We will still be praying for you and Bruce, Charlotte and her needs, and Mary in and through these things you have shared.

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    1. Thank you Eileen... I truly feel that the journey Mark and our Sunday School teachers have been leading us on this year has contributed to my faith in this aspect of God's character.

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  2. Sorry to hear all you have been going through. Being a mom can produce enough stress/worry/anxiety to cause serious stomach ulcers. BUT - as a Christ follower, I am also thankful for how He is teaching you... as I know that I have been grateful for the lessons and challenges He has walked me through. During the process it is so hard, so challenging and I wish that I could wish it away. But then I see Him. I see His hand, His love, His working things out through my own struggles, and I am thankful for His love and gentleness.
    We will be praying for your baby boy and Charlotte, and you and Bruce.

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    1. Thank you Erica... the learning process isn't always easy and it's good to have friends lifting us up in prayer.

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